From former NFL player to UFC fighter. Greg Hardy has become one of the newest members of the UFC promotion after earning himself a contract following a 57-second KO win in his professional debut during Dana White’s Contender Series 9 on Tuesday night in Las Vegas.
Hardy to UFC
Hardy achieved a 57-second knockout over fellow former NFL player Austen Lane last night to earn himself a UFC contract. He had a 3-0 amateur record with three first-round knockouts before his first pro fight.
Afterward, UFC president Dana White announced that Hardy will be signed by the UFC, but the contract might be one of the developmental variety. He could be given fights elsewhere to get him more experience before joining the UFC properly.
Nevertheless, the former NFL player was ecstatic upon hearing that he had been offered a deal by UFC.
Hardy said, according to MMA Fighting: "This means everything. It’s awesome. I don’t really have the words, I’m just super excited. I’m just really glad I got the opportunity, man. Austen came out fighting hard like I thought he would, and it was just a great fight. I got lucky and came in and did what I was supposed to do, and it worked out.”
As you can see in the video below, it was a vicious KO that is worthy of a UFC deal.
However, there are some people that don't want to see Hardy fight for UFC because of his controversial history. The 29-year-old was convicted for assaulting his ex-girlfriend in July 2014, but the charges were later dropped after the alleged victim refused to testify in his appeal.
The UFC President explained his decision to give Hardy a UFC contract as he believes he deserves a chance to rebuild his life.
White told MMAjunkie: “The reality is, if this guy stays clean for the next 10 years, goes on to win a world title, becomes one of the greatest mixed martial artists to ever live, he’s always going to be looked at – he’s always going to hear it. That’s always going to be in the story that’s written about him.
"Other opponents he fights are going to call him a woman beater. That’s going follow him for the rest of his life. You don’t shed that. That stays with you forever, and he’s done all the things right so far.
“The guy paid his dues. He hit rock bottom. He built himself back up, and the guy’s out there just trying to make a life and a living.”
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